Students at Elmwood Park school are treating Mark Rivera like a hero after he saw a student getting picked on, sat down with the alleged bully and spoke to him before getting up and walking away before things got heated, reports CBS Chicago. But his actions could have done more harm than good, according to school officials, and for that reason he was suspended from school – a move that has enraged his parents.
“He should have been given a medal, an award,” said Mark’s father, Cruz Rivera.
Mark’s stepmother Dawn Sanks agrees and says she is “disappointed, really because it fosters an environment that is not conducive to learning.”
Mark says the student he defended is no longer being bullied and that he chose to confront the other boy because, “It’s a really small community so I really can’t stand for someone to be bullied in a community, it’s so small.”
Although the school’s principal James Jennings wouldn’t comment on this specific case, he said: “Some students have good intentions of helping others but the way they go about it can become a problem if it involves threats and can escalate an incident.”
He continued, “You can say stop it or leave him alone but if that doesn’t work, get an adult involved.